As I glance at the side-view mirror of my life, I see the warning about objects appearing closer. It seems this warning also appears on my rear-view mirror or at least it should. When I glance at things from my past, they appear closer. These memories can often take a life of their own in our minds. I must be careful to keep them as memories, not the present, they are there for a purpose. Sometimes these memories are distorted from the time that has passed or how we viewed them in the past.
Today I glance far into my past. I see a happy child. I was lucky, not everyone has a happy childhood. I see all my family and friends, they are happy. My memories are happy. I am overlooking sad times, not on purpose, but when glancing in these mirrors it seems the good times are closer. Are they distorted? That I do not know, as they are my memories, not the memory of another. Today I am not ready to glance at the closer images in my mirrors. That will have to wait until I am stronger. The recent memories are too painful to glance at now, so I will glance only at the distant past. I cannot say they bring happiness, even though they are happy memories, rather they are helping me through a rough time. If I am honest with myself even these happy memories bring sadness as many of the people in them are no longer alive. Escaping sadness seems much harder then I thought.
Glancing at the past we can be picky about what we see. We can chose to look at only good times or bad times, maybe a little of both. But these memories are just that, memories. We are glancing at the past, not looking. It is easy to remember something from our childhood with happiness and when telling another of the memory, they glance into their mirror and remember it differently. I would assume that someone who has suffered a hard childhood or abuse sees mostly the bad times and that those times seems exaggerated, or maybe lessened to help deal with the pain. Maybe they do not glance at all, not wanting to see what is in the past. I wonder how many of us look into our mirrors and see images that are closer then they appear.
Are the memories fact or fiction of our minds? Yet another question that will not be answered. For today, I will try not to see any mirrors. When I first saw the warning sign, I thought I was ready to see my past. I now realize that the sign warning that “Objects Are Closer Then They Appear” is there for a good reason and I should wait to glance till I am ready to see all the images. I am taking this long drive alone, as it should be. I need to know when it is time to stop for a moment, be in the present, before continuing my journey through the past towards the future and that time is now.